INHABITANTS - THE KUNIE PEOPLE

     

Gadji

Wapan

Touete

Ouatchia

Youwaty

Vao

Comagna

Kere

 

 

There are roughly 2000 inhabitants, 95% of whom are Melanesians or Kanaks. For traditional, cultural and social reasons, these indigenous Kunie people are formed into eight tribes, each with their own ‘little chief’ and governed as a whole by a High Chief.

The island is divided rather like a cake and the Kunies live scattered around the island in their own tribal area, mainly in order to cultivate their yams. Many of them also live in the only village, Vao, where the schools (kindergarten, primary and secondary) are to be found, as well as the church, the Town Hall, a medical centre (doctor, nurses, dentist and a mid-wife), several general stores, the market, a bank and the post office.

 
 
 
 

While the Kunies speak their own unwritten language amongst themselves, French is the official language in schools, business, administrative affairs and tourism. English is not widely practised, but in key tourist spots someone will usually speak fairly fluent English and others may have a smattering. Whether you speak French or not, visitors often remark on the friendliness of the local people and their readiness to say Bonjour.

The spontaneous smile and a woven hat

 
       

 

 
How many tribes
are there on Isle of Pines ?
 
     
     
 
What is the name of the village ?
 
   
  The authors and webmaster thank the population of Isle of Pines for its collaboration in producing this site.
   
         
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